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Naperville dog bite injury lawyerFor many families in Illinois, it is almost unthinkable that their beloved pet dog may cause injury to someone, though even peaceful dogs can bite given the right circumstances or if provoked. Dealing with a dog bite injury can be traumatic for the victim and also cause distress for the owners for whom the dog may be considered a member of the family. In cases such as these, Illinois has a specific procedure in place to handle the potentially dangerous animal and analyze the facts of the case.

What Happens After a Dog Bite

Although a dog from Illinois is no more or less likely to bite than a dog from another state, Illinois state law places more liability on the owners of dogs who bite or attack. According to the Illinois Bar Journal, State Farm paid $14 million for dog-related claims in Illinois in 2016, second only to California. The penalties for violent incidents involving dogs can be much stiffer in Illinois than in neighboring states because of the Animal Control Act. The potential timeline and repercussions for a dog bite may vary with factors such as a civil suit or appeal, but you can expect the following to occur immediately following a dog bite:

  1. The dog bite must be reported to an appointed veterinarian licensed by the State of Illinois within 24 hours.
  2. The dog will then be placed in confinement for a period of 10 days for observation, which may be reduced or extended depending on the results of the observation period, the discretion of the veterinarian, and other extenuating circumstances.

While the law clearly prescribes what must occur immediately following a dog bite incident, what happens next depends on the unique details of each case. The court will look at whether or not the dog was leashed, if the dog has acted aggressively in the past, and whether or not the dog was provoked to aggression. Depending on such factors, the owner of the aggressive dog may face criminal charges, civil charges, or both.

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Naperville personal injury lawyerLast month, in a rare event, a coyote attacked a six-year-old boy in Lincoln Park. This is the first reported coyote attack in the Chicago area for at least a decade. Shortly thereafter, a 32-year-old man reported a similar animal attack that some believe may have also been an attack by a coyote. With coyote mating season beginning in February, there is an increased likelihood of coyotes making appearances across the greater Chicagoland area. These interactions between coyotes, people, and their pets can quickly become dangerous due to a more urgent need for food during the season.

Staying Safe Around Coyotes

While coyotes attacking humans is rare, with about 2,000 coyotes in the Chicago area, you are bound to witness coyote sightings. According to the Urban Coyote Research Project, the number of coyote attacks on pets per year had nearly quadrupled since the prior decade. Trends suggest that these attacks on pets, especially small dogs and cats, are only going to increase over time. Here are some ways to stop coyotes from attacking you or your pets: 

  1. Do Not Instigate — In general, coyotes usually mind their own business, especially if they are not hungry, injured, or sick. Just seeing a coyote does not mean you need to take action. In fact, unless they clearly appear to pose a threat to you or your pet, the best thing to do is ignore them. Do not try to rile them up or otherwise instigate defensive behavior. 

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Contact an Illinois Dog Bite Attorney

If you have suffered a dog bite injury, our personal injury lawyers can help you determine the actual value of the damages you have suffered, and we will work to help you recover the compensation you deserve. Call us at 630-552-6860 or fill out the form below to arrange a free consultation.

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